Bay Area Black, Latina real estate couple lowballed $250K in home appraisal

Bay Area Black, Latina real estate couple lowballed $250K in home appraisal

we want to thank julian glover for amplifying our voices and for making it um for giving us the platform to make sure that people understand that these are not one-off situations that um you know people of color are having these experiences the story of paul and tanisha austin has gone viral shared all across the world and now we are hearing of more cases of housing discrimination here in the bay area the marine city couple put 400 thousand dollars into renovating their home and were stunned when the house barely gained any value during the appraisal process when they had a white friend pose as the homeowner that changed by half a million dollars abc 7's race and culture reporter julian glover first shared the austin story of housing discrimination two weeks ago and tonight julian joins us live and julian you've heard from families all across the country with similar stories and you're sharing an oakland family story and how others can fight back hi good evening yes dan and amma truly heard from families all across the country so many of them here in the bay area with similar tales of housing discrimination like the curtis family they reached out to me after they were lowballed in an appraisal by more than 250 thousand dollars they knew something was wrong because both the husband and the wife work in real estate my parents told us that they saw one of your stories on the news about the marin couple ronald and dominique curtis reached out to me after seeing my now viral story on the austin family in marin city being lowballed half a million dollars in what they believe is a racially biased appraisal the curtis family ronald black dominique puerto rican feel they got the same treatment we were in the process of doing the refi uh the appraisal appraiser came out and we were shocked when we saw the value of our home was 254 thousand dollars less than the appraisal we got was five months earlier five months earlier the family's lender rocket mortgage ordered the appraisal through an independent appraisal management company in december 2020.

director carolyn peady

The home was valued at 900 thousand dollars but just months earlier in april the home appraised for one million one hundred and fifty four thousand dollars a quarter million dollar difference meanwhile housing prices went up and interest rates fell you all were uniquely positioned to be able to do your own investigation pull your own comps to realize this ain't right because you all are both in the business i've been a realtor for over 10 years and currently i'm a licensed real estate broker and my wife i've been training to become an appraiser for about two and a half years now somebody doesn't have to say that the reason why they did it was because we were black or puerto rican or people of color but absolutely that's the reason why we kind of felt it the moment that he came to our house the curtisses immediately pulled reports of the comparable homes the appraiser used from the market listing service they have access to as a licensed real estate broker and agent boarded up back there and this was one of the comps that was listed in the appraisal report and this is the garage that's falling down it has the bricks lined along the roof line to hold the shingles down he was just deliberately looking for a property that fit his price so he could lower our value those photos are from the extensive complaint the curtis family filed with the state board of real estate they're waiting for the investigation to play out meanwhile interest rates have increased meaning the family missed out on a chance to save thousands of dollars a year on their mortgage by refinancing i reached out to rocket mortgage for comment and the company provided this statement saying in part quicken loans truly regrets the frustration that mr curtis and his family have experience with their home loan we've reached out to mr curtis to gain his permission to order a new appraisal from a second license appraiser at our expense as an accommodation to our client to obtain an additional opinion of value but the curtis family forwarded me this voicemail showing quicken loans only reached out to offer the second appraisal the day after i stepped in to help we know the implications of that we know what that means it doesn't mean that it affects us for a month or two and then it goes away like this is stuff that affects us for generations discrimination in the housing market is systemic and detrimental to marginalized people with consequences suffered across generations a 2018 report by the brookings institution on the devaluation of assets in black neighborhoods found in most metro areas in the country homes in majority black neighborhoods were valued for significantly less than homes in neighborhoods with virtually no black residents the study found the difference in home and neighborhood quality don't explain the devaluation of homes in black neighborhoods the study showed homes in the bay area's black neighborhoods are valued at 27 percent less than homes of similar quality in white neighborhoods a difference of 164 000 among the worst differences in the nation we shouldn't have to scrub blackness from our homes to get a fair shake andre m perry wrote the brookings institution study and the book know your price valuing black lives and property in america's black cities as the austin story went viral several people on twitter tagged me in perry's work whether it's appraisals whether it's real estate agent behavior lending practices all of these things in housing markets impact price and it's clear that something is going on today that throttles the price of black homes that's about 156 billion in lost equity across the country it would have paid for more than 8 million college degrees based on the average amount of a public four-year institution it would have replaced the pipes and flipped michigan three thousand times over it's a big number those losses often go unseen and unreported that's why nonprofit advocacy groups like the fair housing advocates of northern california encourage families to file formal complaints the executive director carolyn peady stunned when hearing the austin story it was a half a million dollar difference come on the fair housing advocates represent victims of housing discrimination in california someone discriminated against on the basis of race religion gender sexual orientation disability or age among other protected classes can file a complaint folks can file an administrative discrimination complaint with hud's fair housing and equal opportunity department they can also file with the california department of fare employment and housing there are remedies in both rentals and real estate purchases most often in the form of settlements and reprimands but the process can drag on taking months or even years for resolution pd said victims have better odds if they're represented racism either way it needs to be addressed and remedied in in ways that will be remembered the austins are now considering filing a formal complaint what does it mean to you uh to see that you have shared your story and it's encouraged other people to come forward to share theirs with you know people standing up and starting to fight back for social justice i feel like um the world is primed to have this conversation people are talking and they are standing up and letting people know that this is not just a one-off thing that this is a systematic thing and needs to be changed i spoke to the curtis family today and they tell me the offer from quicken loans to get a second appraiser out is just too little too late at this point they've missed the chance to lock in those lower rates to lower their mortgage payments they've already signed a lease to rent a home and they are considering selling their property now if you have faced housing discrimination there are resources out there to help you on this story on abc7news.com i've added a link to the fair housing advocates of northern california they are waiting to hear from you reporting live this evening covering race culture and social justice julian glover abc 7 news yeah julian this is so painful to see but so important great job thank you for shedding light on this and if you have a story for julian reach out to him online on twitter and facebook you can find him at julian g abc7 and on instagram he's julian glover tv

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